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ACCUMULATION: The process of acquiring an item and adding that item to others previously acquired. In an economic context this most often refers to the accumulation of capital, as in the phrase "capital accumulation." However, it is also used in the context of consumer durable goods, financial assets, money, wealth, and a host of other "stock" variables. When applied to capital, the process of accumulation occurs through investment.

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WILLINGNESS TO PAY: The price or dollar amount that someone is willing to give up or pay to acquire a good or service. Willingness to pay is the source of the demand price of a good. However, unlike demand price, in which buyers are on the spot of actually giving up the payment, willingness to pay does not require an actual payment. This concept is important to benefit-cost analysis, welfare economics, and efficiency criteria, especially Kaldor-Hicks efficiency. A related concept is willingness to accept.

     See also | demand price | efficiency | willingness to accept | benefit-cost analysis | welfare economics | Kaldor-Hicks efficiency | Pareto efficiency | externality | market failure |


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VALUE IN EXCHANGE

The ability to trade an item or asset, especially money, for other goods and services that can then be used to satisfy wants and needs. Value in exchange means that value (that is, satisfaction) is obtained indirectly through the acquisition of something else. For an item to have value in exchange it need NOT have value in use, value obtained directly from the consumption of a good or service.

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Helping spur the U.S. industrial revolution, Thomas Edison patented nearly 1300 inventions, 300 of which came out of his Menlo Park "invention factory" during a four-year period.
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